My friend Greg Spragg of Spragg’s Meats – I call him the Pig Whisperer – he is kind & will only raise pastured, hormone and antibiotic free pigs
Deadly pig virus spurs Alberta Pork to organize farmer meetings.
The United States has an epidemic of porcine diarrhea that has killed approximately three million piglets and cost that country $240 million dollars. I just finished reading this news in the article above by Amanda Stephenson. Stephenson’s piece also reports that Ontario has just seen its first outbreak of the virus and a spokesperson for Alberta Pork says that “the real question is, can we keep it out of the Prairies?”.
I think that question misses the point. I think the real question is not “can we keep it out of the Prairies?”; I think the real question is why did these animals get so devastatingly ill in the first place?
I suspect it has something to do with the industrialization of the hog industry but I’m not a farmer or a veterinarian. This crisis is just one more factor that has me and many consumers asking questions and wishing for greater transparency in our food systems. This post describes what I know about the current systems of how pork is raised and goes on to look at some small trends and ideas that might lead the way back to a healthier pork industry with hopefully healthier animals within that industry.
I have 25 asparagus plants in my backyard
Edgar’s Asparagus has 26 acres – I rely on them for the bulk of my eating
Asparagus on Hand – self portrait – Karen Anderson
Taste Alberta: Chefs help feed eat-local movement with Taste Alberta Tuesdays.
Tuesdays are going to taste like Alberta in the month of June. Don’t know what Alberta tastes like? Just go to the restaurants featured in Lisa Monforton’s Taste Alberta article above and you will find out what the taste of this place, Alberta, is. This concept is known as terroir and has been used for centuries by wine growers. It’s what allows wine masters to take a sip of wine blindfolded and know exactly what appellation in France or vineyard in Australia the wine came from. A well made wine tastes like the minerals, soil (sometimes a fired meltdown from a volcano), water, air – all the elements – of the place it came from. The idea of terroir is slowly becoming mainstream for food lovers around the world and here in Alberta as well.